First Montana Muley

BH107

Well-Known Member
Joined
Aug 21, 2009
Messages
145
Location
Montana
I am pretty lucky to have been raised hunting mule deer in SW Colorado every few years we could draw tags as a non-resident. 5 years ago I moved to Montana and had fun hunting the other species I now had in state taking my first elk, Antelope, and a couple of nice whitetails.

Coming into this year I decided to focus on getting my first Montana mule deer. Because of family commitments I don’t get to start hunting until October but as mostly a rifle hunter this works out just fine.

Opening weekend I spent 4 days in eastern Montana with my 8 year old son driving around and exploring. We drove 1700 miles in 4 days scouting and seeing different areas that I wanted to check out later in the season. I actually tuned up a good buck the day before season started but the weather didn’t cooperate opening morning and to be honest I didn’t want to be finished that early.

Several more trips and many more miles on both the truck and my boots saw lots of deer but nothing mature enough to really go after. Heading into the second to last weekend of the hunt I headed back east with my cousins for a final long weekend of hunting before Thanksgiving.

The first day we found quite a few more deer and a few that were showing interest in does, but again mostly young bucks. As the sun rose on day 2 I found myself sitting 150 yards above a group of does that I was sure had to have a buck with them. I watched for quite awhile but nothing showed up and they seemed happy just feeding in the timber. As I glassed further out I saw a buck in full rut chasing a deer all over the side of a hill before they disappeared into a coulee. The problem was they were 1-1/2 miles down below me and I hadn’t really seen how good the buck was but I decided to head down and get a closer look. After stumbling on another buck while headed that way I made it to a butte above where the deer had disappeared and I made my way to the edge. I glassed for some time but couldn’t find the deer but it had been a good walk finding may more places for the deer to hide. As I worked my way around the butte I took one more look back from a different angle just in time to see the 2 deer slowly moving away at about 150 yards. I grabbed my gun and got a better look… it didn’t take long for me to decide to shoot. I waited for a good broadside shot that finally presented itself at 250 yards and the 6.5 PRC did its work. The buck went above 40 yards before expiring…

I was thrilled that everything came together and excited to get a closer look. The bucks didn’t disappoint and there was no ground shrinkage as I got closer. He ended up being 24” wide with almost perfect symmetry except missing one eye guard. He grossed just over 165” and while he’s not my biggest I am more than happy with my first Montana mule deer.

Rifle is a custom Savage 110 with a 22” 6.5 PRC Proof barrel in a McMillan stock. I was shooting factory Hornady Match 147 ELD-M which worked flawlessly.
3B6C4280-ADC9-430C-BAAE-F79068389C5C.jpeg
 

Attachments

  • 26EF991A-F5C7-4D55-A246-AACD10A7B7A6.jpeg
    26EF991A-F5C7-4D55-A246-AACD10A7B7A6.jpeg
    2.7 MB · Views: 56
  • FEE55817-0617-4004-B5B4-6EE2DE112D4B.jpeg
    FEE55817-0617-4004-B5B4-6EE2DE112D4B.jpeg
    2.9 MB · Views: 53

Coyote Shadow Tracker

Well-Known Member
LRH Team Member
LRH Sponsor
Joined
Dec 9, 2020
Messages
2,375
Location
Social Circle, GA
I am pretty lucky to have been raised hunting mule deer in SW Colorado every few years we could draw tags as a non-resident. 5 years ago I moved to Montana and had fun hunting the other species I now had in state taking my first elk, Antelope, and a couple of nice whitetails.

Coming into this year I decided to focus on getting my first Montana mule deer. Because of family commitments I don’t get to start hunting until October but as mostly a rifle hunter this works out just fine.

Opening weekend I spent 4 days in eastern Montana with my 8 year old son driving around and exploring. We drove 1700 miles in 4 days scouting and seeing different areas that I wanted to check out later in the season. I actually tuned up a good buck the day before season started but the weather didn’t cooperate opening morning and to be honest I didn’t want to be finished that early.

Several more trips and many more miles on both the truck and my boots saw lots of deer but nothing mature enough to really go after. Heading into the second to last weekend of the hunt I headed back east with my cousins for a final long weekend of hunting before Thanksgiving.

The first day we found quite a few more deer and a few that were showing interest in does, but again mostly young bucks. As the sun rose on day 2 I found myself sitting 150 yards above a group of does that I was sure had to have a buck with them. I watched for quite awhile but nothing showed up and they seemed happy just feeding in the timber. As I glassed further out I saw a buck in full rut chasing a deer all over the side of a hill before they disappeared into a coulee. The problem was they were 1-1/2 miles down below me and I hadn’t really seen how good the buck was but I decided to head down and get a closer look. After stumbling on another buck while headed that way I made it to a butte above where the deer had disappeared and I made my way to the edge. I glassed for some time but couldn’t find the deer but it had been a good walk finding may more places for the deer to hide. As I worked my way around the butte I took one more look back from a different angle just in time to see the 2 deer slowly moving away at about 150 yards. I grabbed my gun and got a better look… it didn’t take long for me to decide to shoot. I waited for a good broadside shot that finally presented itself at 250 yards and the 6.5 PRC did its work. The buck went above 40 yards before expiring…

I was thrilled that everything came together and excited to get a closer look. The bucks didn’t disappoint and there was no ground shrinkage as I got closer. He ended up being 24” wide with almost perfect symmetry except missing one eye guard. He grossed just over 165” and while he’s not my biggest I am more than happy with my first Montana mule deer.

Rifle is a custom Savage 110 with a 22” 6.5 PRC Proof barrel in a McMillan stock. I was shooting factory Hornady Match 147 ELD-M which worked flawlessly.View attachment 315705
WOW!!!!!!!! Congrats really nice Mule!!
Great story.
 
Top